Painting our Little Free Libraries

Paint generously donated by the Athens Oconee Home Depot

Paint generously donated by the Athens Oconee Home Depot

It’s been awhile since I’ve done an update on our 2 Little Free Libraries.  We’ve had so many end-of-the-year events that it has slowed us down a bit.  Mrs. Foretich, our art teacher, and I sat down and looked at the designs that student groups submitted and narrowed it down to the 2 designs.  One will feature things that show “where I am in the world”.  It will include GA & US symbols as well as some Athens symbols.  The other design features a sun shine with a red color that resembles the bricks of Barrow school.  Ms. Foretich worked with Kenneth Sims and other employees at the Athens-Oconee Home Depot to select paints, and once again Home Depot generously donated these items.  I can’t say “Thank You” enough to this business.  They have been a huge supporter of this project.

While the 5th grade is practicing for the Moving On Ceremony and making music videos in music class, Mrs. Foretich is pulling small groups to paint.  Students primed both libraries first.  Then, designs were drawn on in pencil before beginning the painting process.  Students repeatedly went back to the paper designs and also talked with the designers to make sure the design was staying true to the vision.  Students even worked on mixing paints to get various shades of colors that were needed on the libraries.IMG_0715

Next week, Mrs. Foretich and I will travel to Lay Park and meet with Randy Haygood to discuss the exact location of our second library.  KenDarius, a Barrow 5th grader, is working on a plan for some rising 4th & 5th graders to deliver books to this library throughout next year as it needs to be filled.  He will join us next week when we meet with Randy.

Throughout this project, we’ve tried to keep students at the center.  They have been a part of almost every decision in the project and were instrumental in getting us the supplies that we needed through their carefully written letters.  Of course, this student involvement has stretched this project to a year-long project, but I think it just shows how when you take time to allow students to participate in the process, rich and rewarding experiences and learning occur.

Exciting Little Free Library News

Kenny Sims, Operations Manager with Athens Home Depot, donates the 2 Little Free Libraries to Barrow

Kenny Sims, Operations Manager with Athens Home Depot, donates the 2 Little Free Libraries to Barrow

Two major things happened today with our Little Free Libraries.  I began talks with a possible location for our 2nd library and our 2 libraries were delivered by Home Depot!

I have to say again that we went into this project with a lot of faith in our community and amazing things are happening.  Here are a few recent things:

  • Several students from other grades have come to tell me that they are cleaning out their home libraries to bring us books that they no longer need.
  • Several people have brought in books to fill the libraries already.
  • People donated money during the book fair which was almost enough to register both of our libraries.  The 5th graders are about to each bring in $1, which will help us reach that goal.  Our library numbers will be 5559 and 5560
  • A student who wrote a persuasive letter was beaming when he found out that his letter had been received by the recipient.
  • Home Depot #0129 continues to be a very generous donor to this project.  They have built and donated both libraries and are now working with our art teacher to get supplies for painting the 2 libraries.  They will also help us with the final supplies for installing both libraries.  I can’t thank them enough for their generosity.  They definitely have my future home improvement business!

5th graders immediately came to see the 2 libraries

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Little Free Library Update

A display is ready to inform shoppers at our book fair about our Little Free Library project

A display is ready to inform shoppers at our book fair about our Little Free Library project

We have very exciting news in our 5th grade Little Free Library project.  Before spring break about 14 kids mailed letters to Home Depot in Athens to ask if they could support our project with some materials.  Kenneth Sims, operation manager, emailed me back to ask for a specific list of what we needed.  After some more research on the Little Free Library site and consulting with my talented Dad, I sent him a list of what we would need.  I knew the list was a lot to ask for, so I told him that we would appreciate anything that they could do.

He emailed me back with great news.  Home Depot is donating all of the materials we need to build the libraries, building both libraries for us, delivering them to our school for the kids to decorate, and helping us install them when the time comes.  I was absolutely floored.  I even got a call from the builder before he started the project to just make sure that all of the plans that they were doing fit with what we needed.  I can’t wait to share pictures with you of our project.

We went into this project with a lot of faith that our community would come through for us to make this project happen.  It is so great to know that a major business in the community is so giving of their resources in the name of children, community, and literacy.

Now, we have a lot of work to do, but one major weight is lifted off our shoulders.  The kids were beaming when I went to their classes to share the news with them.  One student in particular was very excited because we realized that she included my email address in her letter in order for the manager to contact us.  She was the only student to do this.

Our next steps include:

  • Painting the designs on our libraries
  • Nailing down our second location with some more persuasive letters
  • Raising money for the registration of the libraries
  • Doing a book drive to fill the libraries and have a stock pile of books to replenish the libraries
  • Writing speeches to present the libraries at the Moving On Ceremony.
  • Installing the downtown library in its location
  • Probably some things we haven’t thought of!

If you would love to help us with our project, we are wide open for help.  One way you could help us is by purchasing a book at our book fair next week or shopping our wishlist at our online book fair through April 5th.  Here’s info on our online fair:

It’s Book Fair time at our school! I’ve created a classroom wish list to add new books to our classroom library. You can view my classroom wish list and purchase books from our school Book Fair website. These books will be treasured by students for years to come.

You can visit our online Book Fair anytime until 04/05/2013. All books purchased will be shipped directly to me at school with no shipping charge. Thanks for getting our class excited about reading.

Your support is appreciated,

Andy Plemmons

Scholastic Book Fairs inspire a lifetime love of reading. A percentage of the total proceeds raised during the Book Fair will stay with the school and help get more kids reading, kids reading more! Visit the Book Fair Web site for detailed information.